Kano Emirate Crisis: I have jurisdiction to hear suit against reinstated Emir Sanusi II—Justice Liman

  • Says matter sensitive, requires speedy hearing

A Federal High Court sitting in Kano has declared that it has jurisdiction to hear and determine the case instituted by Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero and Aminu Babba Danagundi, Sarkin Dawaki Babba, to stop the implementation of the 2024 Kano emirates council (repeal) law.

Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf has assented to the law on May 23, 2024 and thereafter sacked five first-class emirs and reinstated Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi II as the sole Emir of Kano.

But the dethroned Ado Bayero and Danagundi, a titleholder were aggrieved by the law and approached the court to declare it null and void.

The case had degenerated as three judges—two from a Federal high court and another from the state high court—had issued conflicting orders in the case which embarrassed the judiciary.

In fact, one of the trial judges in the case, Justice Liman, had purportedly issued his order in the matter from the United States raising a fresh issue of whether a serving Nigerian judge located in far away USA can leverage on virtual court proceedings to entertain suits whose parties are based in Nigeria from foreign jurisdiction.

Already, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola had to summon the heads of the two high courts for a discussion on why the two courts of coordinate powers were struggling for jurisdiction in the matter and issuing conflicting orders in the case.

At the resumed hearing of the case on Thursday, Justice Liman, relying on Section 42 Sub-section 1 of the Constitution, said the court had powers of jurisdiction to hear the case.

The judge noted, “What I find intriguing is the respondents’ total reliance on the case of Gongola, whereas Section 42 Sub-section 1 of the Constitution has clearly spelt out the jurisdictional powers of the Federal High Court to preside over such cases.

“My respectful view is that the case of Tukur against Gongola is indistinguishable with the present case.

“Section 42 Sub-section 1 and Section 32 of the Constitution have vested powers in our court to decide on this matter.”

In continuation of the case, the plaintiff counsel, Barrister Chukwuson Ojukwu, argued that the matter was ripe for hearing on the main issues of the invalidity of the reappointment of a new Emir, and the deposition of 15th Emir Aminu Ado Bayero.

But Barrister A. G Wakil insisted that the new motion seeking to continue hearing on the Chieftaincy Affairs issues was not part of the original summons and is a different application outside the matter of Human Rights Violation and the jurisdictional powers of the court, which the court had decided.

The judge explained that the matter was adjourned to Thursday, 13th June 2024, for only ruling and nothing else.

Justice Liman thereafter adjourned the case to 14th June, 2024, noting that the matter was too sensitive to linger.

Share your story or advertise with us: Whatsapp: +2348179614306 Email: barandbenchwatch@gmail.com


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here